That is the Boy Scout Motto. It is a motto we all should adopt. Prepare for what? Just about anything. Illness, job loss, pandemic, weather (hurricanes, tornados, snow, flooding etc)
With the price of everything going up like crazy it is a good time to start preparing if you don't already. High gas prices, the increase cost of groceries, shortages of truck drivers, and containers of goods sitting in ports are just some of the reasons to give some thought to stocking up on some things. My biggest sticker shock this week was coconut oil for my soap making. A year ago I paid $48 for a 28 pound bucket. A couple months ago I bought some and the price was $85. This week I was going to order more and the newest price was $121 for the same 28 pound bucket of coconut oil!
If you were unable to leave your home for 2 weeks would you have enough to feed your family? It worries me that some go to the store every day for groceries for dinner that night. I'm no psychic but I just have a feeling things are going to get really bad.
We started about 10 years ago. Just really small. If I was buying a can of soup I would buy 2. One for the cupboard and 1 for the shelf in the basement. In a short time we had a metal shelf filled with soups, veggies, fruit, pasta sauce, pasta, peanut butter and jams.
Then came the garden and canning. Once again we started small. Only 6 raised beds and I only canned, tomatoes, pickles and jams. But it did add more variety to our stockpile. Then a couple years later the garden got a lot bigger and I learned to pressure can. I was able to can meats, broth, vegetables and soups. We had to get more shelves to hold everything.
5 years ago we got the freeze dryer. That opened up a whole new world of food preservation. I could freeze dry just about anything except chocolate, things with a lot of oil (butter, salad dressing) and sugary items(syrup, honey) I also like to make freezer meals. Usually they are single servings. I will make an extra meatloaf or rack of ribs cut them into single servings, vacuum seal, mark and freeze.
When G fell last February and broke his ribs and we had a snow/ ice storm I couldn't get out of the driveway to go to the store. The was no need because we had everything we needed right here. When the pandemic hit and there was a rush on the stores and shelves got emptied, We were prepared. We don't have cases of toilet paper but do have a couple of the big packs. When we use one pack we then replace it.
A few tips on being prepared is:
- only buy what you eat. It is a waste if you buy cases of spam or ramen noodles if you don't eat it. It's a waste is you get 50 pounds of rice or beans if you don't know how to fix them
- look for sales. example: Kroger had pasta $.99 but if you buy 6 then it was $.49
- rotate the cans on the shelf. Newest cans in the back, oldest in front
- learn to cook from scratch. It is healthier than the processed food.
- learn skills such as gardening, food preservation (canning, dehydrating, smoking, freezing), making bread, cheese
- Look at your home and environment to see where there might be holes in your preps Example: If we lose power we lose just about everything (Heat, water, flushing toilets, stove etc) We store water, have alternate cooking methods, candles and lanterns. The one thing we need to get is wood for the woodburning stove
I don't want to sound like an alarmist or to be prepared for a zombie apocalypse but it is better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it. We have worked hard and for years to feel comfortable in case of an emergency. We have had people say to us "I know where I'm going if "SHTF" Our response is unless you are bringing a truckload of food and supplies and are willing to work hard, don't bother.
Excuses I have heard is I don't have the extra money and we don't have the space to store extra. Give up a Starbuck coffee or a fast food meal, brown bag lunches instead of buying lunch. Something as simple as that will buy a few cans for the shelf. If you don't have a pantry or basement to store extra, try under beds, in closets or any unused nook and cranny. Preparing is a CHOICE. What do you choose?